Department chair visits Bielefeld for academic conference and editorial roundtable 

The Chair of the Psychology and Communication Department, Dr. Jose Carlos Lozano visited Bielefeld, Germany during Oct. 27-29 for an international conference and an editorial meeting for an encyclopedia on the Americas.

The International CIAS-Conference: “Reflecting the Americas as a Space of Entanglements” was hosted by the Center for Inter-American Studies of the University of Bielefeld. Dr. Lozano participated as the chair for the panel Practices of Connectedness: Cultural Flows in the Americas, where Giselle Anatol from Kansas University, Matti Steinitz from Berlin University and Yaatsil Guevara G. from the University of Bielefeld participated as speakers.

Dr. Lozano was also there to be part of the editorial meeting for the upcoming publication “Rethinking the Americas: Key Topics in Inter American Studies”, an encyclopedia with five volumes. Dr. Lozano is the co-editor for the volume “Key Topics in Media and Visual Cultures” along with Sebastian Thies from Tubingen University and Sarah Corona Berkin from Universidad de Guadalajara.

According to Dr. Lozano, the project has been in the works for two years now, during which the editors get together to review the progress and evaluate the collaborations sent by other researchers in the area.

“Inter-American studies is a new approach that tries to look at the relation between the different issues in the Americas,” Lozano said. “If for instance, you look at telecommunications, you have to study Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, because you can’t understand it as isolated cases. They are connected with the rest of the Americas.”

Dr. Lozano said they are planning to publish the volume late next year, since the process of revising entries is usually long and slow.

“We invite academics from those regions to collaborate, and depending on the subject we revised and follow-up with their entries. Is a process that takes time,” he said.

One of the entries that comprise the volume is “Community Media” by Dr. Stuart Davis, Director of the Border and Latin American Media Studies track in the Master of Arts in Communication. Dr. Davis is contributing also with “Latin American Rearticulations of Intellectual Property Regulation: Case Studies from Brazil and Peru.” The paper is an attempt to track intellectual movements, economic or industrial practices, or media flows that move across the Americas as a hemispheric region.

The volume also has contributions by Dr. Juan Pinon from New York University on Latino Media, Jesus Arroyave from Universidad del Norte, Colombia on Journalism, Summer Harlow from Florida State University on Media Participation, among many other prestigious academics.

Dr. Lozano said that one of the most interesting contributions of the volume to the field is that is looking at the Americas as a whole, studying the flow of cultural products among all countries.

“That is the most original contribution of the project. The majority of the time we look at Latin America by itself, but not in a holistic manner,” he said.